A randomized trial of vitamin D3 supplementation in children: Dose-Response effects on vitamin D metabolites and calcium absorption

R. D. Lewis, E. M. Laing, K. M. Hill Gallant, D. B. Hall, G. P. McCabe, D. B. Hausman, B. R. Martin, S. J. Warden, M. Peacock, C. M. Weaver

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations


Context: Changes inserumvitaminDmetabolitesandcalcium absorption with varying doses of oral vitamin D3 in healthy children are unknown. Objective: Our objective was to examine the dose-response effects of supplemental vitamin D3 on serum vitamin D metabolites and calcium absorption in children living at two U.S. latitudes. Design: Black and white children (n = 323) participated in a multisite (U.S. latitudes 34° N and 40° N), triple-masked trial. Children were randomized to receive oral vitaminD3 (0, 400, 1000, 2000,and 4000 IU/d) and were sampled over 12 weeks in winter. Serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) and 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D (1,25(OH)2D) were measured using RIA and intact PTH (iPTH) by immunoradiometric assay. Fractional calcium absorption was determined from an oral stable isotope 44Ca (5 mg) in a 150-mg calcium meal. Nonlinear and linear regression models were fit for vitamin D metabolites, iPTH, and calcium absorption. Results: The mean baseline 25(OH)D value for the entire sample was 70.0 nmol/L. Increases in 25(OH)D depended on dose with 12-week changes ranging from -10 nmol/L for placebo to 76 nmol/L for 4000 IU. Larger 25(OH)D gains were observed for whites vs blacks at the highest dose (P < .01). Gains for 1,25(OH)2D were not significant (P = .07), and decreases in iPTH were not dose-dependent. There was no dose effect of vitamin D on fractional calcium absorption when adjusted for pill compliance, race, sex, or baseline 25(OH)D. Conclusion: Large increases in serum 25(OH)D with vitamin D3 supplementation did not increase calcium absorption in healthy children living at 2 different latitudes. Supplementation with 400 IU/d was sufficient to maintain wintertime 25(OH)D concentrations in healthy black, but not white, children.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4816-4825
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Biochemistry
  • Endocrinology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biochemistry, medical

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